Shoo the Spiritual Pigeons Away
In Deuteronomy, Moses gives the Israelites some last bits of instruction and wisdom before his time with them comes to an end. Specifically, in chapter 28, he lays out blessings connected to following commands from the Lord. He says: “If you fully obey the Lord your God and carefully follow all his commands I give you today…all these blessings will come on you and accompany you if you obey the Lord your God…” Deuteronomy 28:1,2
In the list of blessings, one in particular promises: “The Lord will grant that the enemies who rise up against you will be defeated before you. They will come at you from one direction but flee from you in seven.” Deuteronomy 28:7 As I read that recently, I tried to imagine what this might look like. The image that came to mind was that of a bunch of pigeons. Picture it for a moment, if you will: a person sitting on a park bench eating—perhaps nibbling on a sandwich. Pigeons one-by-one begin to slowly toddle up to that person, cooing their interest and delight. Before the person knows it, there are pigeons everywhere, surrounding them, ready to harass and bother them, ready to steal that good thing of which they are partaking—the sandwich. Suddenly, the person, having had enough, stands up, waves their arms, and shoos the pigeons away. In my mind, I can see the pigeons scattering, all in different directions…“They will come at you from one direction but flee from you in seven.”
More often than we like, we find ourselves surrounded, being pecked at by our worries, doubts, insecurities, fears—you name it. They creep in a bit at a time, trying to steal that which is good—our peace, our hope, our faith, our trust…But, these oppressive spiritual pigeons have a source, and, according to James chapter 4, there is a solution to ridding ourselves of their harassment: “Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come near to God and he will come near to you.”
Today, if you are being surrounded and pecked at spiritually, submit to the Lord, stand up, and shoo the spiritual pigeons away. Resist them and watch them flee.